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Most Older Adults With New Dementia Die Within Five Years

Increased odds of death seen in association with older age, male sex, and presence of organ failure

TUESDAY, April 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Most community-dwelling older adults with newly identified dementia die or are admitted to a long-term care home within five years, according to a study published online April 20 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

Gregory Huyer, Ph.D., from Ottawa Hospital Research Institute in Ontario, Canada, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study to describe the association between a new diagnosis of dementia and risk for admission to a long-term care home and death at five years in a cohort of 108,757 individuals.

The researchers found that 24.4 percent remained alive in the community and 20.5 percent were living in a long-term care home by the end of five years. About half of the 55.1 percent who died (27.9 percent) were admitted to a long-term care home before death. Increased odds of death were seen in association with older age (≥90 versus 65 to 69 years: odds ratio, 9.5), male sex (odds ratio, 1.7), and the presence of organ failure, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure, and renal failure (odds ratios, 1.7, 2.0, and 1.7, respectively). The observed five-year risk for death varied between 22 and 91 percent for groups formed by combinations of these factors.

"We present death risk based on these three factors, which can be used by clinicians to open a discussion with patients and their families regarding risk of death and admission to a long-term care home," the authors write.

Abstract/Full Text

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